The novel Half Blood Blues explores an often overlooked slice of history: black jazz musicians in Germany on the eve of World War II. The book moves from 1992 to 1939, from Baltimore to Berlin to Paris. It's told by an elderly black jazz musician and his friend who survived the war. Guest host Jacki Lyden speaks with author Esi Edugyan.
When Teddy Roosevelt became a New York police commissioner in 1895, he vowed to clean up the city's endemic vice and corruption. It didn't exactly work out. New Yorkers liked the idea of standing up to corrupt cops, but they rebelled when Roosevelt tried to enforce a ban on Sunday drinking.
Lionel Shriver's The New Republic is an earlier novel that was rejected by publishers. It's getting a warmer reception after a much-buzzed-about movie was made of her book, We Need To Talk About Kevin. Guest host Susan Stamberg speaks with the author.
When con men took off with Texas rancher J. Frank Norfleet's fortune, he turned con man himself in the hopes of stealing his money back. In The Mark Inside, Amy Reading shares one of the strangest stories in the history of the swindle.
For our March Readers' Review, Diane and her guests will discuss a classic modern memoir. It's the story of an Irish childhood shaped not just by poverty but also a resilient spirit. We hope you will join us to discuss "Angela's Ashes" on Wednesday, March 21.
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